St. Lawrence Seaway begins shipping season

The MV Baie-St.-Paul.

SAINT-LAMBERT LOCK — US Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg and Canadian Transport Minister Omar Alghabra attended a virtual opening ceremony as both agency counterparts look on as the St. Lawrence Seaway begins its sixty-second shipping season.

The seaway, built along the St. Lawrence River and into the Canadian and US-controlled Great Lakes. It is a crucial seaway for the region, permitting high Midwest states like Michigan and Canadian provinces like Ontario and Quebec. For the 2021 shipping season, the MV Baie St. Paul, owned and operated by Canada Steamship Lines, was the first vessel this year to enter Saint-Lambert Lock.

“Moving goods by water through the Seaway ensures trade is flowing freely between the U.S. and Canada while also reducing emissions,” said Buttigieg in a media statement. “After 62 years of operation, the binational Seaway System remains a model of international cooperation and partnership and showcases how we can work together to address the challenges of climate change.”

Alghabra added similar comments.

“The St. Lawrence Seaway has been a cornerstone of Canada’s economic success for more than 60 years, through the creation of thousands of middle-class jobs, and the generation of more than $9 billion in Canadian economic activity,” he said. “This valuable partnership and trade route will play a vital role in our efforts to building back better through strong economic recovery.”

Craig H. Middlebrook, the deputy administrator for the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, said that the seaway generates “more than 237,000 jobs and $35 billion in economic activity in the U.S. and Canada are annually supported by movement of various cargoes on the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System.”

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